O’Leary: Boeing Needs More Customers in Europe, Open to Airbus Order for a Discount…

Photo Credit: Adrian Olstad/AviationSource

LONDON – Ryanair GCEO Michael O’Leary has openly said that Boeing needs more customers in Europe, following many airline conversions to Airbus.

Boeing Is Losing Momentum in Europe…

He mentioned this during an interview with Richard Quest on CNN, referring to the likes of Jet2 and other carriers switching to A321neos instead of 737 MAXs:

“Airbus has had a more successful sales program in the last 2-3 years. They were first out with the NEO, and their order book is much more full than Boeing’s”.

“Boeing needs more orders and they keep losing customers to Airbus, which is disappointing”.

“We are Boeing’s last remaining large customer in Europe. They lost Jet2 recently to Airbus and it looks like the IAG 200-strong order for the MAX has been re-opened so it looks like they will go back to Airbus”.

“Boeing needs more aircraft in Europe”.

Open To An Airbus Order for a 10% Discount…

In the interview, there was a conversation about whether the Ryanair Group would make an Airbus order.

O’Leary said that there have been “no serious discussions” on this and that he would consider it if the manufacturer gave him a 10% discount:

“We would [choose Airbus] if the price was right. We have never been able to get into a serious discussion with them. Airbus don’t ever trust that we would order Airbus aircraft from them”.

“I keep testing them and say ‘Why don’t you give us a 10% discount?’ and then see what happens”.

Ryanair does have some Airbus aircraft through the acquisition of Lauda, but this is the largest indication yet into whether O’Leary would order more of them.

Is Ryanair Teasing Boeing With An Airbus Order?

The interview does come across as Ryanair teasing Boeing with an Airbus order ever so slightly.

It remains clear that O’Leary is probably wanting more than 200 MAX Gamechangers to expand and rejuvenate its fleet over the next few years.

With Ryanair expecting to grow by 10% of pre-pandemic levels, this is also the reason why it has received over 65 aircraft over the winter period from Boeing.

This would indicate that the airline is not far away from receiving its last aircraft, and decisions will probably be made about the future of the group’s fleet moving forward.


We learned quite a few things from that interview, and this is why O’Leary can be seen as admired at times.

He is not afraid to speak his mind, and that gives us a good indication of how the sector in Europe is going to potentially play out in the next 12 months.

One thing to maybe look out for is whether the Boeing rhetoric will continue, or whether it will be suppressed by another good deal made by Boeing.

Otherwise, we could potentially open up the reality of Airbus receiving an order from the Irish low-cost carrier.

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